"Your Sins Are Forgiven" Is Christianity
A god who is comprehensible to us panders to our desires and soon becomes a god that has to entertain in order to command our attention or meet our most immediate needs in order to maintain our devotion. Worship of such a god ultimately leaves us empty because our felt needs are rarely anything more than distractions from the ultimate realities of sin, death and the devil that plague our existence.
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Lindstrom is a business consultant who analyses consumers on behalf of companies in order for them to better serve their customer base. He talks about the initial disaster of Euro Disney, and the large role religion and superstition played in turning the park around:. I couldn't help but notice that this apparent flatness was coincident with a decrease in churchgoing across Europe.
When I visited Catholic and Protestant churches in Germany, France and Italy, I came away convinced that what religion had historically given believers-faith, transformation—was no longer enough. In Europe, at least, parishioners made their way through church portals at around the same pace they strolled through a market or store.
The fact of being in a sacred place no longer slowed people down, which meant that religion was no longer creating the necessary degree of embodied cognition, or space, for worship, or contemplation, or reverence. This insight—that a decline in churchgoing creates the need for other outlets to address the need for transformation—was what moved me to re-infuse superstition into the Euro Disney experience" As a theologian and a pastor, I would exchange his words of transformation and superstition with the word, mystery, and argue the Christian faith still has it by the bucket loads.
Hermann Sasse, a theologian who has had more than a little influence on my ministry, expresses it this way:. That the eternal Word the eternal Father's eternal Son became flesh is truly a mystery, a mystery in the strict sense incomprehensible to reason" Witness , This is a mystery that has occupied the greatest minds of the Western World, men such as Luther, Augustine and Aquinas, and yet also brings joy in the midst of hardship and suffering to the simplest of simpletons.
God suffered this world of pain to secure eternal life for us sinners. The Son of Man conquered death, rose again and walked among us. The resurrected Lord began the eternal feast of heaven with his disciples in the upper room when he ate salted fish with them and showed off his battle scars.
3 Proper Ways to React to the Mysteries of God - LifeWay Leadership
God always had something more glorious in mind, of which the sacrificial system was but a dim picture. In the fullness of time God would send his only Son to become the eternal sacrifice for the sin of mankind. Yes, God knew all the time that the real Lamb would have to be his Son. Only the Son of God who is perfect could please a perfect God.
So when Jesus went to that cross he took our sins with him. Indeed, he also took us with him. There is a beautiful old Christian hymn that states this so well. It asks. In order to illustrate the completeness of this death with Christ we also had our funeral. This funeral is illustrated in Christian baptism. There are several obvious things we can say about a dead person. That person no longer has pride, self-will, evil desires, anger, lust, etc.
The Mystery of Christ the Word of God Found in the Scriptures
He is dead to all these things. In Christ all of us who believe have died and we were buried with him. We are now free to live in him. The life I live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me. In the Old Testament there was not much hope of a resurrection and victory over death. Old Testament people universally speak of a place called Sheol, or the abode of the dead.
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We see in the scripture that even Father Abraham was held captive in this shadowy place Lk. Occasionally in the Old Testament there is some expression of hope beyond the grave. And after my skin has been destroyed, yet in my flesh I will see God; I myself will see him with my own eyes—I, and not another. How my heart yearns within me! We see in the New Testament that after Jesus died on the cross he immediately went down to this realm of Sheol.
What a sight that must have been! In 1 Peter , we are told that Jesus even preached to these spirits in prison. We can imagine that Sheol held its breath.
The Mystery Of Christ
Could the realm of death hold Jesus? Absolutely not! Jesus arose from the grave.
The scripture tells us that many of the saints of old were released, and they appeared to others in Jerusalem at this time. Thus we see that it was Christ and Christ alone who brought life and immortality to light 2 Tim. Yes, we were crucified with Christ and buried with him. However, we were also raised with him in his glorious resurrection.
We Christians can never again look at life as others do. We are risen with Christ. Usually when someone sits down it signifies that their work is finished. Someone has remarked that Jesus only stood again at the death of Stephen Acts his first martyr. If we can believe it we already have a heavenly position with Jesus. We are already joint-heirs with the Lord Rom.
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He has already given us all things that pertain to life and godliness 2 Pet. We already have the kingdom of God within us Lk. He who believes in me will live, even though he dies; and whoever lives and believes in me will never die…. Heaven has nothing better than Jesus.